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Culture Forum

  1. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    21 Jul '09 06:19
    some musicological miscreant recently claimed that jefferson airplane influenced more bands than the grateful dead and yet surely it was the dead that influenced the airplane. here is rock writer oliver trager writing about Surrealistic Pillow, and quoting the JA themselves...

    Garcia is listed as "Musical and Spiritual Adviser" on the back cover of this door-opening disc but that hardly begins to tell the story on his powerful influence on the Airplan's debut release. Not only does Garcia play high electric lead on "Today" and acoustic rhythm on "Plastic Fantastic Lover", "My Best Friend", and "Coming Back To Me", he rearranged "Somebody to Love" into hit material.

    According to Jorma Kaukonen, the Airplane's lead guitarist, Garcia actually ran the recording session in place of official producer, Rick Jarrard. "Jerry could be credited with really being the producer in the real sense of the word in that he was one of us and he knew what to do with the band... he really was the producer who arranged those songs. Additionally, Garcia gave the album it's title.

    This is what's known as a smoking gun quote.

    I rest my case. At least until anyone has the gall to question it.
  2. 23 Jul '09 21:29
    Originally posted by FMF
    some musicological miscreant recently claimed that jefferson airplane influenced more bands than the grateful dead and yet surely it was the dead that influenced the airplane. here is rock writer oliver trager writing about Surrealistic Pillow, and quoting the JA themselves...

    [quote] Garcia is listed as "Musical and Spiritual Adviser" on the back cover of th ...[text shortened]... i] quote.

    I rest my case. At least until anyone has the gall to question it.
    NO argument from me. Jeff Airplane was merely lucky they came to the right place at the right time. Pleasant, but mediocre music is their legacy. Influence anyone? Of course more medicore acts who were inspired to give music a try with scant talent, bad voices and three chord knowledge masquerading as musicality.
  3. 28 Jul '09 01:52
    Originally posted by scacchipazzo
    NO argument from me. Jeff Airplane was merely lucky they came to the right place at the right time. Pleasant, but mediocre music is their legacy. Influence anyone? Of course more medicore acts who were inspired to give music a try with scant talent, bad voices and three chord knowledge masquerading as musicality.
    To appreciate the JA as well as the early Dead you have to understand the times - they were not trying to produce studio perfect music - if you listen with the ear that's in your chest you won't be so critical and will be able to get it. (But maybe you had to really be there?!) Jerry was important to everyone but the music was more than one man or one band.
  4. 28 Jul '09 02:40
    Originally posted by TerrierJack
    To appreciate the JA as well as the early Dead you have to understand the times - they were not trying to produce studio perfect music - if you listen with the ear that's in your chest you won't be so critical and will be able to get it. (But maybe you had to really be there?!) Jerry was important to everyone but the music was more than one man or one band.
    NO argument there, but Jerry Garcia was far more talented than JA ever was. His influence on JA is a testament to how mediocre JA was if he had to rewrite their stuff for them. There's great American music from that era, JA was not one of it's exponents.
  5. 28 Jul '09 02:44 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by scacchipazzo
    NO argument there, but Jerry Garcia was far more talented than JA ever was. His influence on JA is a testament to how mediocre JA was if he had to rewrite their stuff for them. There's great American music from that era, JA was not one of it's exponents.
    The Airplane were uneven but certainly created some classics. White Rabbit. Volunteers.

    I actually liked Hot Tuna much more but Surrealistic pillow had it's moments. Whe it came out it sounded quite progressive. Sure it's lost a lot of it's timbre but you guys are being a little rough on them I think, But, in music to each their own.

    I'm gald to be able to have a chance to talk about this tuff.
  6. 28 Jul '09 11:22
    Originally posted by badmoon
    The Airplane were uneven but certainly created some classics. White Rabbit. Volunteers.

    I actually liked Hot Tuna much more but Surrealistic pillow had it's moments. Whe it came out it sounded quite progressive. Sure it's lost a lot of it's timbre but you guys are being a little rough on them I think, But, in music to each their own.

    I'm gald to be able to have a chance to talk about this tuff.
    Always tough in retrospect indeed. But also great we can talk about these things. Music is great. We live in a country than has produced some of the best rock/pop and genres for eons. I am glad JA came along because they were different. Some lesser known acts were better. Musicianship of a high order was not their forte. I'll pick JA over MJ any day.
  7. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    28 Jul '09 17:01
    I like JA very much. I like GD even more. I see no need for a sports fan mentality when sharing thoughts and feelings about music.
  8. 29 Jul '09 01:54
    Originally posted by FMF
    I like JA very much. I like GD even more. I see no need for a sports fan mentality when sharing thoughts and feelings about music.
    Perhaps it's all about different tastes more than quality. You are cetainly entitled to liking JA. But what do you think of them as JS? I think they really stunk then. They didn't before.
  9. 29 Jul '09 02:10 / 2 edits
    One point though, FMF, wouldn't Garcia playing with JA b ea compliment to JA in itself? Surely Garcia must have appreciated or respected them to some degree to have offered his time and talents. I do see that you enjoyed them as well.

    Yes, Starship was horrid. But Hot Tuna, a offshoot of Airplane, could really play. Ols Papa John Creach on fiddle? Nice!
  10. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    29 Jul '09 06:26
    I liked a couple of bits and pieces from the JS catalogue. I wouldn't use the word 'stink'. They went off and did something that was of little or no interest to me. 'Disappointed' would be a more meaningful, musicological thing to say as it alludes to what was before and what might have been. The comment "unoriginal" contextualizes the music - implies comparison. "Formulaic" raises the issue of how the material is put together or the lack of distinctness. "Lyrically lacking" presents another aspect to think about. 'Stink' seems like a rather one dimensional thing to say. It just means 'stink'. "Man Utd. stink! I support Man City!" I know people who think GD stink, who think Phish stink, who think Loudon Wainwright III stinks, or think Sigur Ros stink. But that's the end of the dialogue, the be all and end of the "analyis". A bit like sports fan trash talk. I like the artists I mentioned. How am I supposed to respond to music trash talk? "Hey you, they do not stink, you take that back, d'ya hear?"

    Incidentally, I'd probably take Hot Tuna to the desert island ahead of Garcia's Old And In The Way or perhaps even ahead of Garcia Grisman. mmm. Not sure about that latter one. Come to think I might be indulging in a bit of genre fallacy here. Hot Tuna were brilliant - but what a failsafe recipe: the two best ingredients of JA casting aside pop sensibilities and doing something that has always felt to me to be gorgeously authentic.
  11. 29 Jul '09 22:00
    Originally posted by FMF
    I liked a couple of bits and pieces from the JS catalogue. I wouldn't use the word 'stink'. They went off and did something that was of little or no interest to me. 'Disappointed' would be a more meaningful, musicological thing to say as it alludes to what was before and what might have been. The comment "unoriginal" contextualizes the music - implies comparison ...[text shortened]... doing something that has always felt to me to be gorgeously authentic.
    Did not remove the stink one bit! Simply an opinion. They themselves thought so or Hot Tuna would not have been born. No interest to you means it must have stunk. Otherwise you seem interested in other acts that certainly were not as mediocre and did not stink! I was never that impressed by them whether as JA, JS or any other name, but admittedly Hot Tuna was not bad at all.